Just rewards

17th March, 2007

Dear Economist,

I cannot help being fair when giving presents or rewards, even though I may actually want to give differently or the recipients may in fact deserve differently. I only differentiate between groups (my children, my nephews and nieces, my friends etc), but not within each group. Not wanting to show favouritism or cause rivalry, I give a present of equal value to every member of a group.

Were businesses to follow my example such “incentives” would no longer serve as a motivating tool. But then, this could also mean no ill feelings or disharmony, right?

Aidida Rosenstock, Germany

Answer at ft.com, subscription free.

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